I’ve long used social media, particularly Twitter, as my water cooler, if you will. As I approach 9 full years as a remote software engineer social media has been a source of gossip, entertainment, news and, most of all, connection with real people that I wouldn’t otherwise get at home.
For all the good it has brought me, however, social media’s dark side has long affected me as well.
Social media has been a source of anger, anxiety and, worst of all, has brought out the worst in me when I engage after a few beers or while angry about other things.
This week I feel like I’ve hit my limit for a while. From the US’ descent into a fascist theocracy to the hopelessness of the climate crisis to the doom of the economy and the death of US democracy in the wake of January 6th, I need a break.
If posting was real activism the world would be a very different place. While I respect social media posts as a vent to express anger, fear and other emotions the fact is I’ve let it all go too far for me and it’s time to step back for a bit.
For as long as I can get away with it (breaking a social media habit is really hard when you work on the internet) I’m going to step away from all my social media sans Mastodon where, fortunately, I tend to find more constructive conversation lately.
I don’t know how long this will last. In the past I’ve managed to make similar breaks last from a day to a week. This time I’m not setting a return time and I’m just going to go until I feel it’s the right time to go back.
Wish me luck.